Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Love your Teak

The teak on Diadem looked to be a lost cause- there was talk of scrapping all. Sasha and I did our research and came up with a plan to restore all the trim work and eventually the decks as well. The problem was that it was badly pitted and grayed out.
Teak is made of hard and soft wood. The soft pith eventually wears out and leaves behind rough grooves of hard wood. The solution is to sand. Above you can see the difference in color as we hit healthy wood full of natural oils, but it really did wonders for the rough pitted texture. We used hand blocks and a random orbital sander. The work began at Noon and ended when we lost daylight. The following morning I hit all the teak with bronze wool and plenty of water to provide an extra smooth finish.
This photo shows how much we had to take away to find the healthy parts of our hand rails. After all the sanding was through we were plesantly surprised with the amount of natural oils still in the wood. We were able to skip the next step which would usually be adding a layer of canned teak oil. After oiling it is recommended to wait 2 weeks before adding a sealer.
After sealing (not varnishing) the teak looks amazing- better than new! The sealant provides protection from UV rays and excessive moisture while allowing the wood to breath. Unlike oiling alone it does not promote the growth of mold and other degrading bacteria.This is the sealer we used-- Found at St. Thomas TuTu Home Deopt.

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  1. I would be interested in knowing what name brand 'sealer' you used. End product looks great! Thanks.. Doug

  2. We picked up a couple cans of "Harris Interior/Exterior Teak Sealer". I loaded a photo of the can to the blog post so you know what you're looking for.